Protein Diet, What we need to know

Protein Diet, What we need to know

by Mellie Jess on Apr 12, 2022

Protein is essential in repairing body tissue, building muscle, producing hormones, and transporting enzymes. There are no significant risks in daily protein consumption. However, individuals should consult their doctors before taking protein powder. They should appropriately follow manufacturers' instructions. Bodybuilders and weightlifters get all the value from protein powder if used adequately (Moore et al., 2020). Not all people need protein powder. Foods like fish, chicken, beef, eggs, spinach, and groundnuts will help reach daily protein content. You should focus on whole foods before loading protein scoops daily.

Exceeding the manufacturer's advice on daily consumption can lead to fatigue, migraines, nausea, headache, bloating, and stomach upset. The body can only absorb up to 35% of proteins daily. Exceeding these amounts can increase the chances of kidney failure and dehydration. A substantial percentage of protein powder manufacturers add sugars and calories to their products (Sánchez-Oliver et al., 2018). Exceeding the daily limit can lead to total weight gain.

Little research has been done on protein powder side effects. However, the current literature provides that protein powder consumption without a doctor’s approval or advice leads to acne, increased bowel movements, fatigue, and cancer. Research conducted by the Clean Label Project unveiled that protein powder manufacturers use heavy metals like mercury and cadmium to produce the supplements (Paul et al., 2022). These metals are contaminants linked with cancer. Therefore, a user should seek medical assistance before consumption.

Regularly consuming protein shakes without working out will significantly increase weight. Protein powder contains high amounts of calories, and the body cannot absorb it all. Lack of a precise training plan will result in fat accumulation leading to weight increase. 90% of individuals who used protein powder without working out cited a comprehensive increase in body weight within a short period. Most protein shakes provide 28 grams of protein per scoop. Individuals who weigh more than 120 pounds need that amount of protein daily. However, protein powder only works on a small percentage of bodies (Sánchez-Oliver et al., 2018). Athletes and aggressive weight lifters will see tremendous muscles gain without an alarming increase in body weight. One should understand their body type before rushing to purchase protein powder.

One can enjoy their morning protein shakes without heading to the gym. This is only advisable for a while. Athletes tend to have bulk days where they consume high amounts of protein daily while on their de-load days. De-load days are meant to relax the muscles and improve absorption. Nonetheless, daily consumption of protein shakes without performing HIIT activities will lead to increased caloric intake, more than the body can contain.  

Protein powder should be used before or after a workout. More than 70% of manufacturers and regular protein powder users advise consumption after workouts for muscle repair and increase in muscle mass. Muscle burns during an intense workout, requiring constant repair. It might be challenging to get the appropriate amount of protein in whole meals, and that is where protein powder comes in (Sánchez-Oliver et al., 2018). Also, protein powder can be consumed as a snack, but the user should concentrate on their whole meals. Some protein shakes contain sugar that compels individuals to prefer it to whole meals. The body adequately needs whole food intake, especially chicken breast and fish.

Protein powder only helps the user add weight due to sugar and calories in every scoop. Other supplements are necessary for weight loss, including glucomannan and chitosan. An average person should consume no more than 30 grams of protein daily. Extremely active individuals can consume up to 60 grams daily, depending on their body goals, body type, and doctors’ opinion. Exceeding daily consumption will result in various body symptoms, for example, stomach aches, acne, fatigue, and regular headaches (Paul et al., 2022). Too much protein can be harmful to inactive individuals. Foods such as chicken breast, lean meat, fish, lobster, eggs, and yogurt have high protein contents. Chicken breast, for example, has 31 protein grams, while fish contains 22 grams. A combination of whole foods and a protein shake is more effective for bodybuilders, trainers, athletes, and highly active people.



Moore, J., McClain, A., & Hong, M. Y. (2020). Dietary Supplement Use in the United States: Prevalence, Trends, Pros, and Cons. Nutrition Today55(4), 174-181.

Paul, A., Gaiani, C., Cvetkovska, L., Paris, C., Alexander, M., Ray, C., ... & Burgain, J. (2022). Deciphering the impact of whey protein powder storage on protein state and powder stability. Journal of Food Engineering, 111050.

Sánchez-Oliver, A. J., Contreras-Calderón, J., Puya-Braza, J. M., & Guerra-Hernández, E. (2018). Quality analysis of commercial protein powder supplements and relation to characteristics declared by manufacturer. Lwt97, 100-108.


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